Genesis 16, 17 and 21:1-14 ERV
God uses the story of struggle, hopelessness, and unproductivity in the lives of Abraham and Sarai to reveal his all-powerful glory. Abraham and Sarai longed for a child, but the promise of God was delayed. However, the delay was not used as a means of punishment, but yet a developer of faith. At 100 years of age, facts showed the couple that the goal of parenting was impossible, but God spoke powerfully into their lives about the blessing that He had prepared to come into their lives.
Like many of us, Abraham and Sarai were sure of what God promised, but instead of being steadfast in faith and patience, they stepped before the will of God with tools of flesh and human ability. Abraham, at the request of his wife, conceived a child with her slave Hagar. Sarai was deeply hurt by her choice, but her actions yielded great consequences. Ishmael was born, but was not the promise of God. He was a mistake and misstep of human emotion.
God makes promises to his people to bless them and bestow greatness upon them, but we must obey and keep our commitment to his commandments. A year after God talked directly to Abraham and Sarai, the impossible became reality. God was faithful, and Isaac was born. Isaac was the path to the great nations promised to Abraham and Sarai. Isaac would father Jacob, who struggled with generational curses. Eventually, the twelve leaders of Israel were birthed from a descendant of Isaac just as promised by God. Ishmael was a blessing, but not the will of God. Even in the mistake and sin, Ishmael was blessed because of his connection to a covenant with God.
The story of unproductivity, lack of faith, and impatience displayed by Abraham and Sarai teaches us that God will still keep his Word. In my personal battle with infertility, I can confess that God is faithful to His promises. We just need faith. God restores and rebuilds great people even when He has little to work with in people. We must offer the sacrifice, keep the faith, and wait for promise to manifest.
- When God delays his will, He is not doing so to deny us, but rather to develop our strength, character, and faith.
- Using human ability to achieve the promises of God will always yield pain and regret.
- God is faithful when we honor His commandments and keep our covenant with Him.
- God will expand your life if you expect that He will keep His promise.
- There is never a time too late to believe in yourself and God.
Most faithful, honorable Father, please grant us vision and show us your will to achieve that vision. Build our faith, so that we trust in you without hesitation. Allow us maintain supportive relationships that will keep you at the center of our lives. In this season, let us see every promise that you have made be manifested in the Earth as it has already been established in Heaven. Release bountiful blessing to those that call upon your name with Thanksgiving. Most of all, touch the hearts and minds of those who need to be reignited with the fire of the Holy Spirit. Let the dream, build and become all that they are will to be by your Word. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
By: Dedria Ward
Dedria Echols Ward is a resident of Tuscaloosa, where she received a Bachelor’s of Science in Music Education from the University of Alabama in 2011. She currently teaches elementary music in the Tuscaloosa City School System. Previously, she has serviced Jefferson County and Jasper City school districts in Alabama.
She is enjoying the early, yet extraordinary stages of marriage and parenting with her husband, Marlin Ward, Sr. After conquering infertility, Dedria and her husband proudly welcomed their triplets, Lailah, Gabrielle, and Marlin Jr. on February 12, 2015.
Dedria’s mission in ministry and “mommyhood” has called her to encourage and mentor women of all ages that encounter parenting, marriage, and management and self-esteem issues. She is the founder her website and blogs Trials of a Triplet Mom and Disclosures by Dedria. She is currently working on various collaborative publications in addition to her own personal story of infertility that will inspire and renew hope to others in similar circumstances.